This lecture series provides a platform on which socially relevant themes can be addressed by inspirational figures from a number of countries. The public discussion at St. Peter’s Church in Leipzig between Kurt Masur, Helmut Schmidt and Peter Maffay in October 2014, which marked the 25th anniversary of the peaceful revolution, counts as the first in this series. The International Kurt Masur Institute is organising this project, which extends far beyond Leipzig and even Germany, in collaboration with partners with whom Kurt Masur also had a special relationship in his lifetime.
2nd Kurt Masur Forum – 10 October 2019
Memories of 9 October 1989
Members of the “Leipzig Six” (a group of six personalities who played an important role ensuring that the demonstrations took place without violence): Bernd-Lutz Lange, Roland Wötzel and Kurt Meyer. Historians: Thomas Ahbe and Sascha Lange.
Accompanying musical programme: Frank Nowicky and the Orchester der Sächsischen Musiker
Under the title of the “Kurt Masur Forum”, the Masur Institute regularly encourages discourse on humanity and society. This second edition focused on the anniversary of the Peaceful Revolution. We especially remembered the call to renounce violence of 9 October 1989, where the Leipzig Six, led by Kurt Masur, appealed for a peaceful exchange of views and nonaggression. Members of the Leipzig Six were in the spotlight, together with the historians Thomas Ahbe and Sascha Lange, and were providing further details about the group’s actions, the historical context and its legacy up to the present day.
The discussion was complemented by a chamber music version of Richard Strauss’s Till
Eulenspiegel, in homage to the Gewandhaus concert conducted by Masur during the demonstrations. Furthermore, the saxophonist Franck Nowicky also gave a performance, representing Masur’s support for street musicians during the summer of 1989.
Excerpt from the Leipziger Volkszeitung, 12 October 2019:
The event returns to June ’89, when the Leipzig street music festival was forcibly disbanded by the ‘security forces’. As a result, Masur invited the public to a conference at the Gewandhaus, which he, later, called a general rehearsal of upright acting. Afterwards the “Orchester der Sächsischen Musiker” remembers the fact, that Masur – in that night, 30 years ago – Masur conducted Richard Strauss’s “Till Eulenspiegel’s Merry Pranks”. So the event concludes with the impression that this needs to be continued. At the bookstand quite a huge amount of books are signed.